Auction Highlights 2017

3rd January 2018

H&H Auction Rooms review the year; with Retro Record Players and Restoration Projects Coming to the Fore.

It has been a busy year for H&H Auction Rooms. The auctioneers have continued to have a large volume of lots available over the course of the year; close to 700 each week, – over 33,000 this year.

In for a Penny, in for a Pound

It has been a busy year for H&H Auction Rooms (HHAR). The auctioneers have continued to have a large volume of lots available over the course of the year; close to 700 each week, – over 33,000 this year. The lots often contain wonderful curiosities that have been collected over a lifetime. As confirmed by the popularity of antique-focused TV programmes, it is often surprising how much value can be hidden away in peoples’ sheds and attics.

There have been several highlights over the year; one stands out particularly with Stephen Farthing, Auctioneer and Valuer at H&H Auction Rooms : “This year we sold a Penny Farthing bicycle or as they were then termed – ‘An ordinary’, selling for over £1200. The happy purchaser was keen to add it to his collection of engineering quirks that is housed in a modest home in Cumbria.”

Another engineering marvel was a fully working scale model of a traction engine, one of two sold on the day. With interest from the length and breadth of the UK, bidding on this lot was particular fierce and the engine sold for in excess of £4,000. More affordable – and increasingly popular items at weekly auctions are record players and other early music players. The growing trend for nostalgic and retro music has pushed more of these items to the market. A recent radiogram, which included the player’s original handbook, went for a very reasonable £50. Such pieces are ideal for playing the vinyl records that so many people have carefully cared for and stacked away.

Additionally, another sale notable for its altruistic motivations was that of an enamel sign; an early RSPCA sign from London. This unique lot was sold in the August auction for £350 to a confident and charitable local bidder. The buyer then donated the sign directly back to the RSPCA, for it to be re-used by the animal charity.

A final highlight for H&H Auction Rooms in 2017 comes from one of the increasingly popular Architectural Salvage sales, which have continued to grow over the year. In the dedicated sale in September, a beautiful cast iron bench – found forgotten in a yard – sold for over £600. Following on from the success of these salvage-themed sales during 2017, H&H Auction Rooms intend to hold four specialist sales in 2018; one more than was held this year. It is hoped that yet more hidden gems will be discovered and put forward for auction.

Throughout the year, H&H Auction Rooms have continued to help local vendors realise their assets, whilst managing their expectations. In terms of furniture we see less demand for traditional brown furniture yet a huge a rise in the popularity of industrial items. In particular, steel shelving or angle poise lamps – indeed any ‘shed find’ will garner an air of excitement on sale day.

Looking ahead to what the trends at auction will be in 2018, Stephen suggests that: “How the price of gold reacts to Brexit will certainly be one of the largest influencers on what items are put forward for auction, and the prices at which they will ultimately sell. Uncertainty tends to push up the price of gold and other commodities, so we may see more jewellery going under the hammer in 2018.”

“Of course, this is purely speculation – and as always I’m excited for the year ahead; whatever people may bring to our auctions for sale. However, one thing is guaranteed: there will certainly be a wonderful eclectic mix of items.”

“Finally, I would like to thank all of our vendors and regular buyers and bidders, for your support throughout the year and on behalf of everyone at H&H Auction Rooms we wish you a Merry Christmas and look forward to welcoming you back in 2018.”

H&H Auction Rooms hold weekly general sales from their site at Borderway in addition to the specialist sales throughout the year; in addition, they will be holding another series of valuation roadshows across the county so keep a look out for the dates when published. For more information contact the auction rooms on 01228 406 320.